Page 1




Eclectic upscale food at Nobie’s

Thresher editor-in-chief says farewell

see A&E p. 7


LEADERS OF THE PACK Men’s and women’s tennis earn No. 1 seeds in C-USA tournament

see Ops p. 5

see Sports p. 9

After delays, administration says gender-neutral bathroom signs to come in May

Beer Bike results changed amid errors Anna ta

Assistant News Editor

illustration by jennifer fu

Cameron Wallace Thresher Staff

As Senate Bill 6 and House Bill 2899 aim to restrict bathroom accessibility for transgender and gendernonconforming people in Texas, the Rice University Queer Resource Center hopes to increase the number of gender neutral bathrooms on campus by changing gendered signs on singlestall bathrooms to gender-neutral signs this summer. This change comes after a five-year-old initiative despite administrative delays. According to Associate Vice President of Facilities Engineering and Planning Kathy Jones, the genderneutral signs will start being installed in late May and will all be in by July 1. In the future, the QRC hopes to have at least one gender-neutral bathroom in every building on campus. QRC Co-President Katie Webber said the project was started five years ago by the Queers and Allies group before the QRC was founded. Members of Queers and Allies gathered data on on-campus single-stall bathrooms and what buildings lacked gender-neutral bathrooms. QRC Co-President Brooke English said this data was lost when Queers and Allies became the QRC. Last spring, after this process was completed, the QRC brought this data to Vice President of the Administration Kevin Kirby and Dean of Undergraduates John Hutchinson and discussed the possibility of turning singlestall bathrooms into gender neutral bathrooms. Hutchinson and Kirby responded by hiring an architecture

firm to survey gender-neutral bathroom sign conventions and design a new sign according to their findings. Last spring, Jones said the sign replacement process would be completed by the end of 2016. “We believe that identifying and signing as many restrooms as possible as gender-neutral is both an important step toward gender equality and a literal sign that Rice is an inclusive and welcoming community,” Hutchinson said in an email.

We’re just trying to change some signs. Katie Webber QRC Co-President English, a Baker College sophomore, said the QRC had been prepared to replace the signs themselves using the data that they had gathered. “The QRC was prepared to find all of the single-stall bathrooms that are mislabeled, provide our own signs and go out and replace these signs ourselves,” English said. “It’s been over a year now, we have the design for the sign, which is almost exactly the same as the one that has been sitting in the QRC for years now and there have been numerous delays in getting them installed.” Jones said she was not aware the QRC already possessed gender-neutral

DISTRIBUTION CHANGES PROPOSED CHANGES INCLUDE 1. Reducing general education requirements from 36 credit hours to 30 hours: nine hours in each distribution area plus a three-credit-hour FWIS. 2. Revising descriptive language for distribution groups and courses. 3. Placing course review committees in charge of recommending courses for distribution credit by mid-term each semester.

signs. The architect had to be hired to create different sign designs for each building to maintain coherence. The delays did not stop there. Initially, the signs were to be replaced over winter break of this year, but, because the architect took longer than expected to create the designs, the project was delayed until spring break. During spring break, however, the QRC was told the signs could not be installed for at least several months because of “documentation issues.” Webber, a Martel College sophomore, said after contacting FE&P and Hutchinson, she was told there were funding issues. “I see the construction work on the building over by Lovett College, and it is moving along and meeting deadlines, but when there is a student initiative brought to FE&P there are issues with documentation or securing funding that result in month long delays for signs that honestly should not be that expensive,” English said. According to Jones, there were no funding issues, and there has already been a manufacturer chosen to produce the signs. The signs should begin to be installed this May. English and Webber said they had been told by FE&P that the signs would be changed this summer by July 1. Webber met with Jones, Hutchinson and Student Association President Justin Onwenu on Tuesday to discuss the project and was assured that the signs would start going in by late May. “It is really frustrating to be told a solid date and have it keep moving backwards when all we want to do is put in signs for the single stall bathrooms at

this juncture,” Webber said. After single-stall bathrooms are converted, Webber said the QRC hopes to convert multi-stall bathrooms in some buildings as well. At the Tuesday meeting, Dean Hutchinson said he would be willing to start working on making some multi-stall bathrooms gender-neutral, especially in college areas where there are currently no gender-neutral bathrooms. According to Hutchinson and Jones, it would be necessary to erect floor-to-ceiling doors in all gender-neutral multi-stall bathrooms, and to remove urinals when converting males’ bathrooms. “There are some buildings that are over 100 years old, so it’s not feasible to add a single stall bathroom,” Webber said. “Our plan is to take one set of multi-stall bathrooms and convert those into gender-neutral bathrooms.” Webber and English said this project will be an important piece of Rice’s commitment to fostering an open and supportive educational environment. “We know Rice stands behind trans students, but we think gender-neutral bathrooms are a great way to make everyone feel safe, including genderneutral people or nonbinary people,” Webber said. “At this point we’re just trying to change some signs, and that can really make a big difference in people’s lives, especially when you think about how far you’d have to go sometimes to use a bathroom that you feel safe in.” Jones said that she and senior administration fully support the project and hope it will allow more students to feel equal on campus.

Elizabeth Rasich

The Student Association Senate passed a resolution encouraging the Faculty Senate to make changes to the distribution system in a 22-2 vote, following debate about Rice’s commitment to liberal arts education and reforming major requirements. The Faculty Senate will decide whether to implement the changes, which reduce distribution requirements from 12 hours to nine hours in each area, in a vote at their meeting on Wednesday. The changes were proposed this semester by the Faculty Senate Working Group on General Education and Distribution. Besides reducing

Women’s race The time excluding penalties for the Sid Richardson women’s team was misread to be 20 seconds faster than the actual time when the initial results were released, according to Duke and Feng. The corrected final time with penalties moved Sid Richardson to second place and Will Rice to first place. Despite an appeal from the Graduate Student Association, Sid Richardson was not disqualified for finishing in the pit area.

I am convinced that Sid won the women’s race and I fully support the contestations. Marita Sailor Will Rice Bike Captain

distribution requirements, they would also revise the definitions for each distribution group, and shift the responsibility for recommending courses for distribution credit from the deans of each academic school to course review committees. The proposal also changes the frequency of the review process to twice rather than once yearly. Lovett College Senator Ariana Engels, a freshman, voted no along with Lovett President Tessa Fries, a junior. “I think the overall sentiment at Lovett is that this proposal is somewhat disappointing in what it changes, because it doesn’t fix the problem of

In a statement posted on Facebook, Sid Richardson bike captain Meg Brigman said the individual rider times list Will Rice and GSA finishing 2 and 3 seconds behind Sid, respectively, but that spectators and bikers saw Sid Richardson was ahead by a more significant margin. “If the coordinators are going to ignore the testimony of the countless people at Beer Bike, the credibility of Beer Bike is worthless,” the statement, which was written by Brigman and the other Sid Richardson captains, said. “[Sid Richardson] is reconsidering competing if there are not significant improvements in the timing or appeals system, as this experience has left a terrible taste in our mouth. We will continue to fight this until the end.” Will Rice team co-captain Marita Sailor said she is proud of her team, but does not believe Will Rice got first place. “After reading Meg Brigman’s post with recalculations and all, I am convinced that Sid won the women’s

0see CREDITS, page 4

0see BEER BIKE, page 4

Faculty Senate to vote on distribution after SA approval Assistant News Editor

After receiving appeals for both the men’s and women’s bike races, the campuswide Beer Bike coordinators have released updated results: Sid Richardson College was moved to second place behind Will Rice College for the women’s race, although both teams believe this to be incorrect, and fourth through seventh places were noted as possibly incorrect for the men’s race. The campuswide coordinators, Ashton Duke and Colin Feng, said the release of final results was delayed by several petitions and resulting investigations. “There comes a point when we must give the judges the benefit of the doubt and just go with what they have down,” Duke, a Baker College sophomore, and Feng, a Duncan College junior, said. “They may not be correct, but they are the first people to record the results on paper and the last impartial people we have left.”



the Rice Thresher

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Many students lack sex education, SOCI study finds Lizzie Bjork

Thresher Staff

Two-thirds of Rice students did not receive formal sex education prior to attending Rice, according to the findings of a survey conducted by a group of students in Social Problems (SOCI 231). The survey also found 44 percent of the 367 respondents said they or someone they knew had been involved in an incident of sexual assault. Group member Haley Kurisky, a Baker College junior, said the study aimed to examine students’ attitudes and education levels in light of the decision to create a equired class for new students, Critical Thinking in Sexuality. Twenty-two percent of respondents said they did not learn about consent at Rice, a number which group member Suzie Meling said included education programs like Project SAFE during Orientation Week. “This [knowledge gap] is insane because everybody should have learned about consent if they had Project SAFE,” Meling, a Will Rice College senior, said. The survey received enough responses to make it a mathematically significant representation of Rice, Meling said. However, participants chose whether to take the survey and about two-thirds were female, which may have skewed the results, according to Eschberger. Group member Christine Mai said that in its number of sexual education programs, Rice has fallen behind peer institutions including Princeton, Brown, Harvard and Stanford, all of which have online classes or forums. “At Rice, we stress a culture of care in which we look out for one another,” Mai, a Lovett College senior, said. “As a campus, we all have a personal stake in educating each other and making sure we decrease any educational disparities among students – including those among sexual health education.” Throughout the project, the group communicated with the Wellbeing Center, which plans to use this data to develop the CTIS class and sexual assault prevention programs for O-Week, according to Eschberger.


the Rice Thresher

Eschberger said O-Week programs are particularly important because students need information on consent before encountering situations like Dis-Orientation or public parties, which involve alcohol and a greater risk of sexual assault. Despite the availability of resources for sexual education on campus, including the STRIVE liaisons, the Health Center and the Women’s Resource Center, many students did not know where to turn for information, Eschberger said.

When it comes to sexual health, [Rice students] are actually very misinformed. Suzie Meling SOCI Group Member “A lot of Rice students are afraid to admit if they don’t know something,” Eschberger said. “We want to make it easier for people to have these conversations.” The study, conducted by Meling, Kurisky, Mai, Baker junior Madeline Eschberger and Martel College junior Amanda Cervantes also consisted of a focus group. Focus group participants said students would would feel more comfortable getting information on sexual health, sexual assault prevention and birth control from people they knew, Meling said. The sociology group hopes the university will make sure O-Week advisors, Rice Health Advisors and college masters are well informed on these topics and able to help students. “We like to think that Rice students are very well-educated about everything, but when it comes to sexual health, they are actually very misinformed and don’t know where they should be going,” Meling said.












12% data courtesy suzie meling, haley kurisky, madeline eschberger, christine mai, amanda cervantes

Students reflect on Critical Thinking in Sexuality pilot Jaecey Parham Thresher Staff

As the last week of classes unfolds, the pilot course for Critical Thinking in Sexuality also comes to an end. CTIS, which will become a mandatory class for next year’s incoming new students, was piloted as an LPAP section this semester. The pilot was taught by Director of Sexual Violence and Title IX Support Allison Vogt and Title IX Resource Navigator and Student Wellbeing Specialist Jordan Everett. According to Vogt, the pilot was used to test material to be taught in the CTIS program, of which there are two parts: a UNIV CTIS Workshop that is required for all incoming new students and a LPAP CTIS that is optional. “In the five-session CTIS workshop, we will focus on the topics of healthy relationships, consent, sexual violence and bystander intervention. The workshop will be required of all students,” Vogt said. “[The LPAP] will be lengthened to the entire semester and the material will be expanded upon. For instance, while we addressed sexual health in the pilot, it was brief. During the LPAP, we will have more time to unpack the information.” Duncan College freshman Gillian Culkin, who is enrolled in the CTIS pilot, said the course defied her preconceived expectations. “I read the articles that raised concerns about the class and I went into the class with those thoughts in consideration,” Culkin said. “However, I felt like the only way I could really form an opinion was by taking the class itself I

was surprised by how comfortable the classroom atmosphere was and by the interesting discussions we had.” Culkin said the CTIS pilot has filled in gaps of her high school sexual education. For her, the course is a benefit for incoming freshmen.

I was surprised by how comfortable the classroom atmosphere was and by the interesting discussions we had. Gillian Culkin Duncan College freshman “New experiences and situations in college that are relevant now were not relevant in high school, so I did not learn about them then, but I am glad that I have taken CTIS because it has upgraded my knowledge to the mature, college level,” Culkin said. “Since I am a freshman, I can say I found this class to be something a freshman should learn, especially the 14-week extended course.” According to Everett, the CTIS workshop and LPAP course will educate students about new information. She said the goal of the CTIS

workshop is to decrease unhealthy attitudes about sex, sexuality, relationships and consent while working to increase gender equality, healthy sexual communication and empathy. “[CTIS is] not the sort of thing that is discussed in high school,” Everett said. “Having worked for an agency that went into high schools, the style is very different than what you would typically see.” Henry Barring, another student in the pilot, said the course lived up to its name — it promoted critical thinking about issues not traditionally curricular. “Too often are the problems in our culture, in the messages we hear, and in the language we use pushed under the table and not talked about,” Barring, a Lovett College freshman, said. “Open discussion is a crucial step towards social justice and equality for all, and this class promoted that kind of dialogue.” According to Barring, the course could be improved by including more Rice-specific discourse. “The more people see how rape culture, racism and unhealthy mindsets are everywhere and that Rice has these problems too, the more likely they are to fight against them,” Barring said. Vogt said the pilot’s success cannot be fully determined until the course’s conclusion and upon receiving student feedback. “I believe preliminarily — as the class has not finished yet — that students have learned from the pilot and we are very grateful to them for allowing us to test programming with them.” Vogt said. “We know we have a lot to learn from their experience

and we will make changes as appropriate to both the workshop and extended class.” According to Alex Addy, who is also enrolled in the CTIS pilot, with benefits of CTIS also comes precautions about potential problems. “I do think new students will learn a lot of important information from the class though, especially those that came from areas that lack in sexual education,” Addy, a Martel College sophomore, said. “The only thing that I could see being a problem before the implementation in the fall is the scale of the class.” Addy said a certain learning environment is necessary for CTIS. In order to cultivate an effective experience, he said the Title IX office will need to seek instructors who can create this environment. “This will only be a problem if the teacher is unable to foster the environment needed to have the class,” Addy said. “Allison and Jordan, who teach our class, are fantastic, but an ineffective teacher combined with insensitive or disruptive freshmen students will lead to a bad experience.” Vogt said one change for the CTIS workshop has already been determined: The workshop will include more extensive information that initially was solely for the LPAP. However, Vogt said feedback from students in the pilot course will be an influential determinant. “We are excited to read their feedback and to make changes as needed,” Vogt said. “That is the point of the pilot. We cannot expect that we were perfect to start, nor do we expect to be perfect going forward, but we will certainly try.”



Wednesday, April 19, 2017

the Rice Thresher


0CREDITS FROM PAGE 1 overload with problematic majors,” Engels said. McMurtry College President Walden Pemantle said McMurtry supported the resolution but raised questions over the proper way to address student workload issues. The original language of the resolution did acknowledge that changing distribution requirements was not a full fix to concerns about academic requirements, and also called for a comprehensive review of major requirements by academic school deans.

[The proposal] isn’t the end-all-be-all and we recognize addressing major requirements is important. Justin Onwenu SA President “My college is for [the distribution requirement changes] and I’m for it just in that it lessens the workload on students, but ultimately I think more breadth and having less majors that ask too much of their students is the better way to fix the problem,” Pemantle, a junior, said. Pemantle proposed an amendment to the resolution adding language that emphasizes Rice’s continuing dedication to a holistic education. The amendment was approved unanimously via straw poll with Pemantle’s abstention. SA President Justin Onwenu said the amendment helped characterize the resolution as the first step in addressing concerns about student workload. “I think all of the students want to see us say that this isn’t the end-all-be-all and we recognize that addressing major requirements is

important,” Onwenu, a Sid Richardson College junior, said. Onwenu said one of the advantages of the proposed changes is that since classes would be classified as capable of fulfilling distribution requirements twice a year rather than annually, the change would increase class variety. Brown College President Santiago Avila said students at Brown were divided as to support of the resolution as a whole and concerned about what the resolution would mean for liberal arts at Rice. “We actually had a little bit more in favor of opposition, because it sends a signal that we are defying our own commitment to a liberal arts education,” Avila, a junior, said. Avila said that the proposed changes wouldn’t do enough to change attitudes towards distribution requirements. “I just don’t think this is the solution to the issues we see with the distribution system,” Avila said. “I think a lot of it actually falls down to proper advising and moving away from ‘Let me just take the easiest distribution’ to ‘Let me take something that’s actually going to add to my education.’” Will Rice College President Michael Devine said the changes to the distribution requirement system would give students more flexibility in their schedules. “With the credit-hour cap we gave the administration the power to determine what students could and couldn’t do,” Devine, a junior, said. “With this, we are provided with more freedom to do what we wish with our education and what we get out of it.” Onwenu clarified that the resolution was not a response to last year’s credit hour cap but said he agreed that the resolution meant students would have more freedom to dictate their academic schedules. Duncan College Senator Juliette Turner-Jones said it was necessary to pass the resolution to send a message to the Faculty Senate. “If we don’t support this, it’s going to look to the Faculty Senate like we don’t know what we want, as if we’re not ever going to stand behind something for change,” Turner-Jones, a freshman, said. “If we support this it’s step one of a several-step process.”

New engineering dean selected: Reginald DesRoches of Georgia Tech Drew Keller, News Editor Following a months-long search, the School of Engineering announced that Reginald DesRoches, the current chair of civil and environmental engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology, will take the position of engineering dean on July 1. In a statement, Provost Marie Lynn Miranda said DesRoches was a strong educator and leader who would help carry out the vision of the engineering school. The search committee begin looking for candidates in August and conducted initial interviews with 14, then narrowed the field to four before choosing DesRoches, according to committee chair and physics professor Paul Padley.

Interdisciplinary museum minor to fill professional niche Jennifer Fu

Thresher Staff

New academic opportunities are underway for next year with the introduction of the museums and cultural heritage minor. This interdisciplinary minor includes courses in film, anthropology, art history and archeology, along with a core required class, Museums and Heritage (ANTH 341). The minor was approved by the Faculty Senate at their March 29 meeting. Co-Director of the minor and art history professor, John Hopkins cited the growing destruction of artistic materials in Syria, Cambodia and other countries as a factor in conceiving the minor. Hopkins said a growing focus on archival, museological and digital preservation of heritage has driven greater student and faculty interest. “It seemed important to provide a home for that kind of study, a place for Rice students to become a part of that conversation,” Hopkins said. Along with Rice’s strategic position in the middle of the museum district and Houston’s exemplary resources in museum practice and


race and I fully support the contestations made,” Sailor, a senior, said. Brigman, a junior, said their final biker finished in the pit area rather than the race lane. The Beer Bike rule book states the final biker must finish in the race lane, prompting an appeal of the race by the third-place GSA. However, because the rulebook does not list specific penalties for a violation of race procedures, Duke and Feng said there would be no penalty for Sid Richardson. Men’s race Despite appeals from the Martel College and Brown College men’s bike teams, Duke and Feng kept Will Rice College’s third place ranking as the times recorded by Rice Program Council judges matched those provided by Will Rice. Brown team co-captain Ben Rasich said the final results were a good first step, but that Will Rice’s third-place result should not be official. Rasich said data from GPS-enabled bike

cultural heritage, Hopkins and Co-Director Kerry Ward said they believed it was time Rice provided a venue for museum scholarship. “Our hopes for the minor are simple: that students will see vastly increased intellectual and career opportunities at Rice and in local, national and international museums and cultural heritage institutions,” Hopkins said. “The minor provides students with a rigorous academic foundation before helping place them at local institutions, creating a cohesive classroom-to-experiential education program.” Duncan College freshman Jackson Stiles, an earth science major, said he hopes the minor will encompass natural science museums as well as the traditional fine arts. “The administration needs to realize that collaboration between departments to fill more niches is a good way to encourage engagement in those departments,” Stiles said. Hopkins said that the minor will add to Rice’s museum and cultural heritage initiative. “I hope that this is the first, important step toward building a larger program that will make Rice a key player in the world of heritage and museum study and scholarship,” Hopkins said. computers used by GSA, Brown and Baker’s final bikers prove Brown finished roughly 45 seconds after GSA and 45 seconds before Baker. The Brown and Martel teams alleged that an extra cool-down lap was added to the time of their final bikers. After reviewing the appeals from both teams, Duke and Feng stated Brown and Martel’s times for the final biker deviated from the rest of the bikers on each team. Martel co-captain Colin Losey said while he does not blame Duke and Feng, he believes Martel should have placed fourth in the men’s race and the lack of an official result is demotivating. “Perhaps most importantly, I think it’s just the height of stupidity that the races aren’t filmed,” Losey, a junior, said. “My god, it’s 2017, why are we relying on eyeballing the race, flags, stopwatches and pencils and clipboards” Duke and Feng said they recognize that the decision may not please everyone, but hoped everyone would understand their perspective and side of the process. “We did our best to make this the best Beer Bike possible and no matter what happens, we are honored to have been your campuswide coordinators,” Duke and Feng said.



RPC releases new Beer Bike Results, with split times and penalties. Women’s top two places changed with updated times. Men’s places 4-7 were deemed potentially inaccurate due to timing errors.




Beer Bike 2017

APRIL 17 Brown and Martel men’s teams file appeals

WOMEN’S TIME CORRECTIONS: 1. SID 17:50.28 + 0:20.00 = 18.10.28 2. 2. WRC 18:08.23 - 0:00.40 = 18:07.83 1. 3. GSA 18:13.52 - 0:00.00 = 18:13.52 3. as of April 5

as of April 17

infographic by christina tan


From the Editor’s Desk: Parting words Editorial: Bathroom sign delays are unacceptable Though the administration clearly does not oppose the idea of having gender neutral bathrooms on campus, we believe that the administration should have placed a higher priority on this project (see p. 1). Instead, the process has been riddled with inefficiency. Every day of delay is a problem for someone that is frustrating at best and physically harmful at worst. Every month is another that trans members of the Rice community have to choose between bathrooms where they may feel uncomfortable or in danger or hike across campus to one of the few genderneutral bathrooms. It is tempting to go through a long process to develop long-lasting solutions, but in a case where the well-being of students is at stake, it is the administration’s responsibility to implement an imperfect, short-term solution that can then be further improved upon. When the upstairs student center bathrooms were signed as gender-neutral for a recent weekend, no architect approved the temporary signs, and yet they worked perfectly well. Following renovations, Brown has had multi-stall gender-neutral bathrooms with no issues for the entire year. Creating an environment in which trans individuals can use the bathroom with the same ease and safety as everyone else is not an issue just because the Texas legislature is more hostile than usual. It has always been an issue. When the administration finally moves beyond delays and makes gender-neutral bathrooms happen, it’ll be an important step forward — but until we’ve reached that point, we can’t give them credit for it.

My baby is all grown up. But then again, the Thresher was never my baby. After all, I am simply one of many in a long line of stewards who voluntarily foisted a stick up their ass for an entire year to produce a college weekly. I’m going to hazard a guess that more than one person reading this really dislikes me. Maybe you think I’m a socialist or a feminazi, or I ruined your professional aspirations when the Thresher quoted you saying something embarrassing that you did, in fact, say on the record. Or maybe you think I’m a crazy beyotch who gets off from critiquing the Student Association’s many, many, constitutional violations. I’m not here to convince you I’m a nice person, because as editor-in-chief, that was never part of the job description. Of course, this isn’t to say that we never stumble, as on more than one occasion a discerning reader has approached us with legitimate critiques and questions regarding our coverage. (This excludes hysterical accusations of bias by people angry that we did/didn’t write a candidate endorsement, or who don’t know the difference between a news article and an editorial. These are all filed under the “personal problems” category.) Plunged into the deep end, I have, along with the rest of the editorial team, navigated the tempest that is Rice’s social and political scene to try to bring you comprehensive and inclusive news coverage every week. Throughout this process, I’ve come to see more clearly than before that Rice really isn’t the bubble we’ve always made it out to be. Rather, as many other have also pointed out, it’s a microcosm and a reflection of the world around us. Unwelcome foreign bodies

trying to influence our elections? Check. (Accidental) voter disenfranchisement? Check. Catty mudslinging from candidates and their supporters? You bet. The media being accused of peddling “fake news”? Hell yeah. Of course, this doesn’t even begin to capture the myriad problems our Rice community struggles with, whether it’s protecting the undocumented students among us, advocating for gender-neutral bathrooms, addressing sexual violence, or combatting racism, sexism and prejudice in its many

Be a bad bitch. iterations here on our campus. The Thresher strives to shed light on these issues, because it is all too tempting for Rice students to ignore the problems we see in the world around us and brush them off with a decisive, “This isn’t us.” Sadly though, that’s simply not true. Working for the Thresher and more broadly as a Rice student, I have witnessed and experienced firsthand women interrupted and brushed aside, their opinions dismissed or questioned in ways that their male counterparts absolutely did not encounter. I have seen intellectual discussions tinged with disturbingly casual Islamophobia and antiSemitism — often unwittingly, to my horror. My personal experiences and observations are but a scratch on the surface of the small, but deeply frustrating, injustices many Rice community members continue to face.

Sometimes I worry that attempts to rectify these problems are made more difficult by a prevailing sentiment among Rice students to be nice, nonconfrontational and conciliatory. And it’s true: We all love Rice. But when you love something, you want it to be the best it can possibly be. You can never be satisfied until the school that you cherish, that you’ve called your home for so many formative years, that has provided you with so many opportunities, reaches its potential as an equitable, inclusive and just institution. As the Thresher Managing Editor Anita Alem once said in all her infinite wisdom, “I didn’t come here to make friends. I came here to get a degree and smash the patriarchy.” So to that end, don’t aspire to be nice. Rather, be a bad bitch. If working at the Thresher has taught me anything, it is the importance of stepping on a few toes. Question everyone and everything. Engage in dialogue, especially with those from different backgrounds and whose opinions might vastly differ from yours. But also remember that sometimes, it’s OK to say “Fuck it, I’m done talking. Now let’s get back to work.”

Yasna Haghdoost

is the Thresher Editorin-Chief and a Will Rice College senior

Beer Bike fines should remain but be flexible as needs change In last week’s edition of the Thresher, the outgoing Hanszen Beer Bike college coordinators wrote an op-ed regarding the Beer Bike fine system. In light of this article, Rice Program Council would like to take the opportunity to clarify common misconceptions surrounding the fine system and to discuss our plans in reforming the system moving forward. We assert it is necessary to keep the fine system to promote campus safety during the event, but it can be improved to reduce the financial burden on the part of college coordinators. First, it is important to understand how the college fines are used. College fines are deposited directly into the RPC Beer Bike account and pay about 10 percent of the current year’s Beer Bike costs, and any rollover goes into a track maintenance fund to cover occasional yet very expensive track repairs, about $12,000-$14,000 every 3-4 years, where the track is an amenity used by every college every year. It is also important to note that the campuswide Beer Bike budget is a completely separate account from the general RPC budge, so money allocated to Beer Bike cannot be used for other RPC events and vice versa. One of the main critiques of the fine system is that RPC directly benefits from the violations of its own rules, but the college fines only support Beer Bike for everyone in the years to come. Second, the fines satisfy a general safety standard agreed upon by various university departments. Every year the campuswide coordinators work directly with the college

STAFF Yasna Haghdoost* Editor in Chief Anita Alem* Managing Editor Juan Saldana* Business Manager news Drew Keller* Editor Emily Abdow* Editor Anna Ta Asst. Editor Elizabeth Rasich Asst. Editor

coordinators and university departments such as Risk Management and the Rice University Police Department to add fines as concerns arise and edit existing fines as needs change. Overall, it should be understood that the primary concern of these fines is campus safety and not for the financial gain of RPC. Third, it is important to understand the role of the student security volunteers, who record fines but do not intervene. The Hanszen College coordinators argued actions that do not warrant intervention do not warrant fines. However, security volunteers are not instructed to intervene due to safety concerns. Physical intervention could put security volunteers, who are simply students, in harm’s way. It would likewise be unreasonable to ask security volunteers, who again are simply students, to try to verbally control the large number of, sometimes belligerent, students who participate in the event. RUPD officers are always stationed and ready to intervene in serious cases. Finally, we simply ask that security volunteers explain the situation in which they do not write any fines because fineable actions have been so commonly observed in the past. By no means do we encourage issuing unwarranted fines. The Hanszen College coordinators suggest instituting a flat rate in place of a variable fine amount. RPC recognizes the difficulty of working with a variable cost. However, removing the variable fines removes any accountability on the part of the colleges and any incentive for the college coordinators, the liaisons between

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arts & entertainment Lenna Mendoza Editor design Christina Tan Director Sydney Garrett News Designer Katrina Cherk Sports Designer Ellie Mix A&E Designer Jennifer Fu Illustrator photo Sirui Zhou Editor Charlene Pan Asst. Editor

business operations Shannon Klein Ads Manager Sarah Evans Distribution Manager Jennifer Lee Ad Design Manager Sara Lopez Marketing Manager online Charlie Paul Editor *Editorial Board member

RPC and the colleges, to effectively disseminate information regarding the rules of the event to those at their colleges. While it is impossible to control the behavior of every single individual, college coordinators can take steps such as requiring attendance at a rules meeting in order to receiving a Beer Bike shirt to reach as many people as possible. All that said, RPC is more than willing to engage in conversations with the colleges in an effort to reform the fine system, as in no way do we claim the current system is perfect. Several years ago, RPC noticed fines had started to become a financial burden for the colleges and started giving a 50 percent discount to colleges for cleaning up after the water balloon fight instead of fining colleges for not cleaning up. This year, in response to abnormally high fine amounts incurred by the colleges, the campuswide coordinators worked with college coordinators to reduce fines to reasonable amounts. In the end, the highest fine amount issued this year will be $850, as opposed to the $1,000-$3,000 range cited in the previous op-ed. It is not our goal to drain the colleges of their funds. Although we assert the fine system itself is a necessity, we believe an in-depth review of the existing fines would help ensure the financial viability of the colleges. While the Hanszen college coordinators never approached us directly with their concerns before choosing to bring them into a public forum, RPC has already begun to engage in conversations with the colleges about reforming The Rice Thresher, the official student newspaper at Rice University since 1916, is published each Wednesday during the school year, except during examination periods and holidays, by the students of Rice University. Letters to the Editor must be received by 5 p.m. the Friday prior to publication and must be signed, including college and year if the writer is a Rice student. The Thresher reserves the rights to edit letters for content and length and to place letters on its website.

the current fine system upon hearing about the previous op-ed’s imminent publication. In the end, both RPC and the colleges share a mutual goal: to serve the student body through the many events we put on throughout the school year, including Beer Bike. As such, RPC does not stand to benefit from stripping funds from the colleges. Rather, the current fine system was created to ensure the safety of all involved, and any money received from the colleges is only utilized to support future Beer Bikes, an event enjoyed both at the campus and college level. In the end, RPC and the campuswide coordinators want nothing more than to make Beer Bike as enjoyable and as safe as possible for all the members of the Rice community and to make it as smooth as possible for all the planners of the event, both at the campuswide and college levels.

Colin Feng and Ashton Duke are the

2017 campuswide Beer Bike coordinators, Stephanie Zhao is the RPC president and Jodie Nghiem is the former RPC president

Editorial and business offices are located on the second floor of the Ley Student Center: 6100 Main St., MS-524 Houston, TX 77005-1892 Phone (713) 348-4801 Email: Website: The Thresher is a member of the ACP, TIPA and CMBAM © Copyright 2017



the Rice Thresher

Lowering distribution contradicts university values The recent Committee on Undergraduate Curriculum proposal lowering distribution requirements offers an unnecessary solution to a non-problem. Less stringent distribution requirements fail to provide students with a well rounded liberal arts education, do not address problems with excessive major requirements and disincentivizes students from exploring other fields outside their major. Rice claims to uphold a commitment to the liberal arts and diversity of thought, yet lowering distribution requirements to the bare minimum necessary for accreditation sends the opposite signal. It indicates to students, both current and prospective, that Rice only cares about a rounded education because it looks good to prospective students, parents, and college rankings. Rice must embrace the liberal arts we so often advertise in marketing materials. If we want to truly be the school we claim to be, there cannot be such a dismissal of distribution classes. Rice must actively cultivate the environment where an engineer, a biologist, an economist, a sociologist and a philosopher can sit at the same table and discuss issues from various perspectives. We must foster a cultural shift where students want to be intellectually curious. Students should be guided and incentivized to explore. Rice is hypocritical to simultaneously extol the virtues of a well-rounded education while requiring students to have less of one. Less stringent distribution requirements fail to address the root of the problem with general education at Rice: excessive major requirements. When students are singularly focused on meeting the requirements of their major, they won’t fully explore other fields. A huge disparity in major requirements exists between STEM majors and majors in the humanities and social sciences.

A political science major requires 36 hours of classes, but a chemical engineering major requires 93 hours. For students with heavy major requirements, distribution requirements are an opportunity to do something different. Who is to say that decreasing the distribution requirement will not motivate departments to increase major requirements in fields that already demand so many hours? Overall, keeping the distribution requirement the same is vital to ensuring all students have the opportunity to explore subjects outside their major. The pressure to double major also reduces a student’s ability to gain a liberal arts education, and decreasing the distribution requirement limits students’ ability to be introduced to different paradigms of thought, especially among those with double majors. On paper Rice can brag about how interdisciplinary we are with the number of double majors, but how often is that drive to double major a result of wanting each class to “count” toward a line on a resume? Especially at a STEM-heavy school like Rice, where STEM students are less motivated to take courses in non-STEM fields, it is the university’s duty to instill a value for the humanities and social sciences. Each student should be able to graduate with a firm grasp of the impact of their work on society. There is no way achieve this goal without being well versed in the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences. Reducing the number of distribution classes will not have its intended effect. Students are not going to take a few more courses in fields outside their majors. Instead, students will either not take those classes at all or they will double down on courses within their field. Though the goal of increasing student autonomy is noble, it should

not come at the cost of a core tenet of a Rice education. Further, the reduction of distribution requirements will be hard to undo if passed. By that point there is little hope to redeem the liberal arts core at Rice. We at Rice are here for a diverse education and collaborative environment. We did not choose a school that silos knowledge but rather one where students come to appreciate critical thought and analysis between fields. This environment is unattainable without forcing students into courses outside of their primary fields, and the value gained from repeated exposure should not be put up to debate. If Rice wants to move toward a model of pure professional preparation, where every skill is directly related to a future career in one specific field, then advertise the university as such. Lowering distribution requirements moves Rice in that direction and signals that the liberal arts component of a Rice education is not a priority. We urge both students and the Faculty Senate to vote against resolutions supporting the proposed reduction.

Avesh J. Krishna is a Brown College sophomore and Catherine Kirby is a Baker College sophomore

Rice needs religious pluralism, not tolerance As Rice students, we pride ourselves on being a part of such a diverse population. We have multiple forums via which we can have meaningful conversations surrounding sensitive topics. Topics such as race, ethnicity, socio-economic status, sexual orientation and gender identity all find a place in our day-today experiences. Yet it seems that throughout our campus one very important topic has been pushed to the periphery of student life: the “R” word, religion. In Orientation Week, residential colleges and most classes, religion is kept at bay. After conducting interviews on student life it is clear that conversations surrounding religion at Rice are stifled. For example, when asked if O-Week provided open conversations about religion, over 72.6 percent of respondents disagreed. Respondents were also asked if they knew the religious identification of their close friends at Rice and 45 percent marked neutral or disagree. One respondent said, “I expected to be exposed to a diversity of religion[s], but most advisors didn’t talk about religion at all and seemed not to belong to any religion.” This quote unveils a hidden culture at Rice that functions to keep religion and discussion of religion in the background. However, not talking about an issue does not fix it. According to a study completed by Elaine Howard Ecklund at Rice, 94 percent of Rice students report being religiously tolerant but only 57 percent said they are always treated with respect by people of other religious faiths. A clear disconnect exists between what we as students perceive as being religiously tolerant and what we as people perceive as someone being religiously tolerant of us. When not addressed, this lack of discourse has the potential to negatively affect

student life and comfort on campus. Oftentimes religious minorities receive the greater share of intolerance. The question then becomes, who identifies as a religious minority? Our survey revealed that almost 36 percent of our respondents self-identified as a religious minority on campus. Some respondents who belong to the more prevalent religious groups on campus, such as Christians, still identify as religious minorities. This indicates that the size of their religious community is not the only reason students identify as religious minorities. Students who selfidentify as religious minorities may experience a lack of structured organizations on campus, O-Week discomfort, lack of access to places of worship, insufficient diet accommodations at serveries or overall feeling of an absence of religious support on campus. One thing is for sure: None of these problems are going to be solved without engagement. We, as students, will continue to face these issues until we can initiate and engage in meaningful conversations that cultivate openness. The fear of different worldviews and beliefs butting heads keeps many students from maintaining an open dialogue. In one interview, a respondent claimed, “We need to be careful about being too open about religion. There is a possibility of tension and it might not always be so friendly and positive.” Although it is scary to break the “politeness” underlying the silence, not engaging in these discussions will only perpetuate the status quo. For too many students who feel marginalized, this status quo is simply not working. Part of the problem is figuring out how to approach the concept of inter-faith relations. We have all heard we should be religiously tolerant

of others, but tolerance only scrapes the surface. Tolerance allows us to draw lines, defining us as “us” and others as “them,” while not taking steps to break down barriers of miscommunication and illusions. Another term more closely embodies our values here at Rice University. Religious pluralism goes beyond tolerance and facilitates, facilitating the implementation of a critical approach. It allows us to see past the superficial requisites for “tolerance.” Pluralism is the active and energetic engagement of diversity. It involves increasing our religious literacy in order to create mediums through which we can interact with one another in respectable and informed ways. While we may at times feel uncomfortable, true change and dissolution of barriers is rarely comfortable.

(Sherry) Siqi Ning is a Duncan College senior, Camilia Perez is a Baker College senior, Qianru (Charie) Xiong is a Sid Richardson College junior, Chad Tatum is a Martel College junior, Sandra Lopez is a Sid Richardson College junior, Hayley Clark is a Baker College junior, and Mekedlawit Setegne is a Brown College sophomore

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Join the March for Science Time and time again, Rice students have been described as “politically apathetic,” prone to ignoring the current events of our day in favor of schoolwork, research and other activities encompassed in that impermeable bubble of academics. Since the presidential election, though, one would be hard-pressed to assert that Rice students remain unmoved. I distinctly remember the blanket of depression that fell over the campus in November, but it did not take us long to get fired up again. The high attendance at the Women’s March in January shows Rice students do have political passions that can be channeled to instigate change. Another opportunity is upon us, and it is right up Rice’s alley. The Houston March for Science, our local version of the national MFS event to be held in Washington, D.C., will take place this Saturday, Earth Day, April 22. The new administration has appeared increasingly threatening to scientific enterprises and funding especially with the release of the proposed national budget in March, which would cut The National Institutes of Health’s budget by about 18 percent, the Environmental Protection Agency’s by about 31 percent, the Department of Energy’s by about 6 percent and The National Science Foundation was not even mentioned. More disturbingly, these are not the only programs affected. As Rice students, we are uniquely juxtaposed next to the largest medical center in the world and a stone’s throw from NASA. On top of that, Rice is a respected research institution, meaning we are surrounded by science on all sides. Scores of Rice students themselves are researchers and should personally feel some concern about recent political moves against science, perhaps even the very grants that fund students’ research. The MFS is very much a testament to many of the values Rice prioritizes including scientific inquiry, academic rigor and intellectual curiosity. We owe it to our community and nation to participate in this movement that seeks to resist against the systematic devaluation of science. Now is our opportunity to express those concerns in a concerted, organized and effective manner — what’s more scientific than that? We will march to Houston City Hall, where we will have the opportunity to listen to scientists and researchers speak about the importance of science, research and inquiry in our everyday lives. These speeches will not only focus on topics of pure science but also the importance of immigration, women in STEM and education. A variety of teach-in tables will also be set up at the march, each with the goal of spreading awareness about just how awesome science is. I am honored to say I will speak at the event, and I hope to share a bit about why I believe this march is a turning point in our society’s general appreciation of scientific endeavor. Statistically speaking, I doubt that an event more perfectly tailored for the Rice community will pop up less than 15 minutes from our campus in the near future. Now’s our chance to really get out there and show our force as science enthusiasts!

Cyrus Ghaznavi is

a Sid Richardson College senior

WomenLEAD Women’s Leadership essay contest winner Jan. 21, 2017 marked the largest single-day protest in U.S. history. Countless women swarmed our nation’s capital to stand in solidarity. Many rights were represented that day yet inarguably the underlying driver was one of the hope for more women in leadership. While many of my friends across the country were participating in the marches, I could not attend. Instead I had committed to going to class for my MBA program that morning. Driving through the flamboyant pink attire and creative signs on my way to class, a pang of remorse hit. I would have liked to have joined them. Yet I drove on, and dutifully took my seat in nondescript business casual attire at the Jones School of Business. However, as I looked around the room at my fellow female classmates, it hit me. I am marching today. I am marching alongside seven beautiful female leaders. Whether we realized it or not, in a class of 60 executives with only eight women, we had been quietly marching all this time. Despite all the women’s rights movements throughout

history, women in leadership are still grossly underrepresented. Yet in the room that day stood eight highly capable leaders each as different and unique as their varied backgrounds, nationalities and experiences. An entrepreneur who lost her father at a young age yet stepped up to the plate, became a business woman and started multiple companies to take care of her family. A health care administrator who tirelessly works to end cancer through conscientious capitalism. A leader who after serving our nation in the army now works at NASA advancing our cause for greater exploration. An engineer who works alongside the good ole boys to develop energy projects across the globe. A real estate guru who has navigated the toughest corporate politics and aims to defend others in lesser positions throughout the organization. A wife, mother and mathematician that stands alongside her husband as COO to run the internal operations of a successful engineering firm. An HR

administrator that loves life and others well and pushes herself to achieve greater things for both herself and those around her. Together we were marching that day. And we had been for almost two years. Leadership looks different on every woman however certain core attributes emerge. Traits such as Persistence. Passion. Service. Ingenuity. Determination. Advocacy. Collaboration. Loving others well. And Humility. All traits represented by my fellow classmates. Leadership demands sacrifice. Leadership demands hard work. Leadership demands integrity. Leadership demands commitment. It is not a one-day event. It is not an easy ride. It’s staying committed to helping others advance even after all the news cameras have left the scene. And your fellow protestors get pulled back to everyday realities. When the school work is demanding. When you get passed up for the promotion you had been vying for. When the industry takes a turn for the worse. It’s about

quietly and steadfastly marching on. The Women’s March on Washington garnered worldwide attention, yet it is the everyday commitment to these values that will promote more women into leadership positions. The tide will not be turned through complaints, one-off conferences or more segmented group efforts. It will be changed through an undying work ethic. It will be changed through the pursuit of lifelong learning. It will be changed as women continue to rise to be the best in their field. It will be changed through the service of others. It will be changed when the negative hold of a victim mindset is replaced with an empowered call to duty. And it will be changed when we become a voice for those that have no voice. The true change will happen when both men and women alike embrace their leadership skills, develop their God-given talents fully and commit a lifetime to march for others. Chris Staffel, ’17, executive MBA student


Kristen Stewart steals the show in ‘Personal Shopper’ Maddie Flavin Thresher Staff

courtesy the editorial & goodreads

‘The Women in the Castle’ falls short of premise Elizabeth Rasich

Assistant News Editor

Jessica Shattuck’s most recent novel “The Women in the Castle” is based partly on her experiences as the granddaughter of Nazis. In the early days of Hitler’s regime, Shattuck’s grandmother ran a “Landjahr Lager,” a farm for Hitler youth to spend a year learning the skills for the agricultural society Hitler wanted Germany to be. In a March 2017 New York Times op-ed, Shattuck wrote about her unwillingness to accept her grandparents’ role in the horrors committed by the Nazi regime. “The Women in the Castle” deals powerfully with the realities of German life during World War II, but fails to fully live up to its premise. In many cases, the novel focuses on commending the supposedly heroic actions of Marianne, the member of the German Resistance, rather than understanding why the Nazi, Ania, and the bystander, Benita, failed to resist as Marianne did. Shattuck skillfully juxtaposes the turbulence of Hitler’s rise to power with the normality of daily life that remained for several years after his initial election. Her characters constantly remind us that standing by while others wreak havoc is often as bad as participating in the violence. The novel opens with a party, an aristocratic gathering in the Burg Lindenfels castle where much of the novel takes place, as the Sturmabteilung (a Nazi paramilitary force) attacks Jewish properties in Munich. Guests eat apple tortes and drink champagne and cavalierly discuss the fate of their Jewish neighbors. It is at this party that Marianne’s husband decides to join a plot to assassinate Hitler. Meanwhile, he and his friends designate Marianne the “commander of wives and children.” Ultimately, this is Marianne’s great contribution to the resistance — ensuring her friends’ wives and children are cared for after the plot fails and her husband and fellow

THE WEEKLY SCENE The editor’s picks for this week’s best events. Time to explore the wonderful world of Houston.

collaborators are killed. That, and ensuring all of their letters are properly sorted. Surely in this work of fiction, Marianne could have been permitted to have a more active role in pushing back against Hitler’s regime. Marianne’s only faults are that she’s too vehemently opposed to Nazism and can’t cook, which are hardly relevant flaws in the context of World War II. Her impeccability comes across as saccharine, unrealistic and uninteresting.

In the drama “Personal Shopper,” director Olivier Assayas reunites with Kristen Stewart to take us through one woman’s time spent grappling with life’s unanswerable questions. Is there an afterlife? Do our loved ones ever leave us? Can we truly move on? These human questions haunt all of us. Deeply thought-provoking and hard to classify, this beautifully told picture uses its titular profession to examine how even what we can’t or don’t see can leave their marks forever. Maureen (played by Stewart) is the personal shopper and assistant to Kyra, a bratty celebrity with whom she rarely interacts. Maureen is also a spiritual medium whose twin brother Lewis died at 27 from a congenital heart defect, a health issue she shares. In between errands, Maureen stops by her childhood home outside Paris, anticipating Lewis will make contact with her from the other side as part of a pact the siblings once made. But, when Maureen starts receiving phone texts from “Unknown,” who may or may not be Lewis’ ghost, she must figure out the messenger’s identity and what they want, even as it becomes evident she hasn’t gotten over losing her brother.

If the “Twilight” franchise led you to question Stewart’s abilities as an actress, then “Personal Shopper” will make you immediately take back that negativity in humble apology. Limited in that blockbuster universe by weak characterization and a questionable plot, this art-house world demonstrates Stewart’s tremendous and underestimated capacity to create a vivid internal life for a character, when given material as intelligent as she is. In a film that mostly relies on simple dialogue to convey complexity, she successfully communicates Maureen’s difficult journey in grief processing, mostly alone and often non-verbally. The emotion is in the eyes and body language, as Maureen spends most of the film in a state of desire for something more, be it finding closure with Lewis or secretly trying on Kyra’s wardrobe. Stewart’s trademark fluid androgyny is what ultimately makes her performance as Maureen so effective. In a film that’s not afraid to leave nagging questions unanswered and to march to the beat of an abstract plot, Stewart holds nothing back as a category-defying artist in an industry that often wants everything it touches to be in its own specific little box. The film seamlessly blends elements of psychological thrillers with those of ghost 0see SHOPPER, page 9

If we sit by and judge from behind the safety of our desks, we will have only ourselves to blame. Where the novel becomes more compelling is when it deals with Ania’s contributions to the Nazi cause. The central question of World War II is not how German citizens resisted the atrocities carried out by Hitler but rather why German citizens allowed such atrocities to happen in the first place. Ania’s story is of a well-intentioned person who believed Hitler’s rhetoric and was too quick to deny reports of discrimination and violence. Like Shattuck’s grandmother, Ania directs a Hitler youth farm and it is only after she allows three brownhaired, physically disabled and otherwise “deformed” children to be sent to death camps that she leaves the Nazi Party. Ania’s complicity in the face of evil was the reality of many German citizens. Her story forces the reader to consider whether in the same circumstances they might have been an Ania or a Marianne. Shattuck has written a novel that, despite its flaws, is an important and timely read.

courtesy trailer teaser




Celebrate student art at this showing of works by seniors majoring in Visual and Dramatic Arts on Thursday from 8 to 10 p.m. Expect a tent made of yarn, old Macs and burnt canvases. Admission is free and the event is catered.

In the four years since its inception, Mariachi Luna Llena has been booked all around Houston. On Saturday, they put on their fourth annual Spectacular from 4 to 5:30 p.m. Admission is free, doors open at 3:30 p.m.

KTRU presents the elusive Houston musical project Jandek. Over nearly forty years, the project has spanned over 100 album/DVDs in the folk, rock, classical, and blues genres without ever granting an interview. The show is on Friday at 8 p.m., doors open at 7 p.m. Check the website for free priority tickets.

Sewall Hall

Hamman Hall

Hamman Hall

WARP AND WEFT OF CARE This one-day video installation will show works by Sondra Perry and Jen Liu about the threats that labor poses to workers. Three other Lawndale shows close on the same day, Saturday April 22, making it a great chance to see what you’d otherwise miss. On view from 2 to 4 p.m.

4912 Main St. Lawndale Art Center



Wednesday, April 19, 2017

the Rice Thresher


Post Beer Bike hair regret


Abstract: The Art of Design

by areli navarro magallon



30-second transformations

Ombre lipstick

courtesy buzzfeed

courtesy courtesy daily mail

In a phrase: Turns out your friends aren’t hairstylists Where to find it: Look in a mirror It has been more than two weeks since Beer Bike, a time lapse we can measure not by tracking our calendars, but by the roots everyone seems to be sporting. We’ve hit that sweet spot, folks. One day you wake up and realize you can’t quite remember the original color of your now-faded, vaguely bile-colored hair. Freedom from the Rice bubble is impending, meaning you’ll be re-entering the real world, where not everyone casually pulls off the Barbiemakeover-gone-wrong look. Now is that time of the year where you should either consider touching up your dye job or cutting it off … all in preparation for the next Beer Bike of course.

In a phrase: Body positive hashtag Where to find it: The Bopo (body positive) community on instagram

In a phrase: Netflix original show Where to find it: Your Netflix account or the Netflix account you mooch off of Only eight episodes long, this docuseries is perfect for watching in between final essays during dead days. “Abstract” provides a refreshing change from your usual Netflix adventures, illustrating various careers in the design industry. Focusing on prominent individuals in their respective fields, the show reveals the processes behind interior design, architecture, footwear design, etc. in 45-minute episodes, in an insightful and visually pleasing (of course) way. Plus, for every person that watches this show, there’s one less “So what can you actually do with a VADA degree, anyway?” in the world. Watch alone in bed, or enjoy with a friend, but make sure to proceed with caution: You might get the false impression that there are no leading people of color in the design industry.

courtesy blusho

In a phrase: Perfectly faded lip color Where to find it: The makeup world has been experimenting with two-toned lips for a couple of years now, purposefully creating an ombre effect where the center of the lip is a darker, richer color that blends into a lighter outlining color. The latest trend, however, is to buy pre-two-toned lipstick that allows non beauty gurus to recreate the look without any of the effort or blending. A quick touch before heading out is an easy, light summer look that pairs easily with a dress and some sandals. Buy as a gift or treat yourself, but you’ll definitely be ~hip~.

People are responding to the pressures of social media to look a certain, ideal way by subverting the “transformation photo” narrative. The transformation photo has been traditionally used by the fitness community as a means of motivation, tracking the progress of an individual with a before and after photo. These 30-second transformations repurpose the concept to acknowledge the “perfection” we all strive for in our carefully selected Instagram photos. From fat women that fully embrace and know their bodies are beautiful, to fitness figures who nonetheless get bloating and have cellulite, these photos hope to remind people of reality. The idea is that it is ok to post a “good” photo with ideal lighting and positioning as long as one consumes the images responsibly, remembering everyone can “transform” within 30 seconds.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017


the Rice Thresher


KTRU Outdoor Show to promote local music, student installations Ali Wilt

Thresher Staff

What do Chicago rappers, Houston jazz bands and South Indian religious music have in common? They will all be featured at KTRU’s upcoming 26th Outdoor Show. The all-day festival of music, food and art in the central quad will also celebrate KTRU’s 50th anniversary. The April 22 event will bring a variety of musicians to campus, and will give participants a chance to interact with various campus art organizations. Emily Foxman, a Lovett College junior and Outdoor Show event coordinator, said the show has a diverse lineup.

Festival-goers will be able to interact with projections, decorate a large ‘50’ with drawings and stickers, and watch a large origami structure ‘breathe.’ “This year’s show is especially exciting — the lineup is extensive and promises for a great turnout. We’ve recently released the artists, and are lucky enough to have co-headliners of Jamila Woods and Saba, two Chicago artists on the rise who have worked with, among others, folks like Chance the Rapper,” Foxman said. Jamila Woods, one of Pitchfork Media’s best artists of 2016, was featured on Chance’s hit song “Sunday Candy,” as well as “Blessings” from “Coloring Book.” Saba also collaborated with Chance on “Everybody’s Something”

0SHOPPER FROM PAGE 7 stories to create an unsettling melancholy that taps into our fascination with and fear of death. This is best exemplified in the scenes where Maureen is alone in her childhood home, waiting for a sign. Even without gross-outs or jump scares, these moments are still nerve-wracking. As it often is with the topic of mortality, we ache to know, but are simultaneously terrified enough of the possible answer to not want to know. One of the film’s most outstanding achievements is its ability to build tension through text messaging better than most slasher films put together. There’s no corny overly orchestral music, no exaggerated panicking. Just the click of an iPhone keyboard, the three periods typing to indicate progress from the other end, and the whoosh of a message received. In those sequences, “edge-of-your-seat” earns its name.

This art-house world demonstrates Stewart’s tremendous and underestimated capacity to create a vivid internal life for a character, when given material as intelligent as she is. Like Maureen in the end, some viewers may feel incomplete when loose ends are left untied. But “Personal Shopper” realizes that that’s life. There are some things that we will never find out. And why worry, when you’ve got another day of this life to live?

from the critically acclaimed “Acid Rap” mixtape. KTRU’s Outdoor Show will showcase both on-campus and local talent. “As always, we also have tried to focus on Houston’s music scene, too, this year getting three local bands in addition to Steve Cox’s Beard, the winner of Rice’s Battle of the Bands,” Foxman said. “Our local acts and midliners are artists who are going to showcase several different types of music.” Foxman anticipates the Outdoor Show will expose students to music outside of charttopping genres. Bayonne, an electronic solo project from Austin, will be performing, as well as the Mayapuris, a Florida-based group that showcases kirtan, a form of meditative Sanskrit chanting. Other groups include Free Radicals, voted one of Houston’s best jazz bands by the Houston Free Press and indie rock group Rose Ette. “This concert’s pretty neat because a lot of the acts aren’t traditional ‘mainstream’ stuff that you would find just by listening to popular radio stations,” Foxman said. “They’re really talented performers and it’s really fun to watch how people respond to and interact with their music.” This year’s Outdoor Show will expand to include art installations by various student groups, including pieces from the Matchbox Gallery, the Moody Center for the Arts and the Arts and Engineering Group. Festival-goers will be able to interact with projections, decorate a large “50” with drawings and stickers, and watch a large origami structure “breathe.” Foxman is most excited about the Moody Center’s “Toilets as Public Art” piece, where mostly art-focused student organizations will decorate toilets from a reuse warehouse as part of a series called “Give a Shit About…” Along with music and art, the KTRU Outdoor Show will host various food trucks throughout the day, as well as a beer garden for those 21 and over. As in years past, the festival will run from 2-9 p.m., with free admission for all ages.

courtesy, chicago music, elaine shen

Jamila Woods (left), Saba (right) and Steve Cox’s Beard (bottom) will perform this Saturday.

Nobie’s: Where yuppie meets hipster Lauren Heller Thresher Staff

Nobie’s Address: 2048 Colquitt St. Price Range: $$ Phone number: (346) 319-5919 Hours: 5-11 p.m. TuesdayWednesday, 5-12 p.m. Thursday-Saturday

Recommended dishes Frito shishito Arancini It’s not you, it’s brie Beer-battered sweet tots Nobie’s is home to one of the most eclectic menus in Houston. Nestled in a house on a residential street, the restaurant serves up a constantly changing menu that draws upon the executive chef ’s fine-dining roots in a more approachable and affordable way. The menu is split into cute sections like “awe shucks” for oysters, “spread ’em, dip ’em, etc.” and “pop ’em” for appetizers and “small-ish plates” for light entrees. We chose to order two rounds of appetizers and light entrees, staying away from the heavier (and more expensive) dishes. One thing to note is that Nobie’s offers a happy hour Tuesday through Saturday, but only for drinks. The first round comprised of fries, frito shishitos, “it’s not you, it’s brie,” Thai crispy rice salad and arancini. The fries were seasoned well and were appropriately crisp on the outside and soft on the inside. However, I would have preferred them with

ketchup instead of tartar sauce. The fries also paled in comparison to the creativity of some of the other dishes. For example, the frito shishitos were a fun play on roasted shishito peppers. While the flavors of the lime crema, queso fresco and cilantro certainly blended well, the frito topping was the twist that turned it from upscale to approachable. The dish “it’s not you, it’s brie” was a small cheese board with toasted bread, a wedge of kunik and roasted grapes. For those of you who don’t know what kunik is (like me before this meal), it is a triplecreme cheese that combines goat’s milk and cow’s milk. Spread on toast, this cheese is like a better butter. The roasted grapes had a hint of balsamic vinegar, that made for a good combination with the cheese. The Thai crispy rice salad had the strongest flavors out of this round of dishes with its bunches of herbs, chili and lime. The shrimp and peanuts gave it a nice bite, but the crispy rice was hard to chew, which was disappointing as I expected it to be the star because of the dish’s title.

of beet slices, avocado cream, pickled blueberries, mint leaves and spiced pepitas. It was an interesting mixture of both textures and ingredients, although whole slices of avocado would have been better than avocado cream. Our final dish was the beer-battered sweet tots, which ended up being our favorite. Instead of normal tater tots and ketchup, it’s fried sweet potato wedges served with smooth goat cheese and harissa. Harissa is a North African blend of chili peppers, garlic, olive oil and spices like cumin, coriander, caraway and mint. This plate is a great summary of what Nobie’s does best: combining disparate ingredients in a unique way that you can’t believe you hadn’t previously tried. However, the title wasn’t for nothing —this restaurant serves hipster dishes at yuppie prices, enticing both populations. Our bill came out to about $30 per person after tax and tip, which isn’t outrageous given that we ordered seven plates. If you’re looking for a low-key place to celebrate a special occasion, like graduation, that isn’t too far from campus, Nobie’s is a great option.

Spread on toast, this cheese is like a better butter. Finally, the arancini came dusted with herbs and lemon zest, served over tomato jam. Arancini are basically fried risotto balls, but the best part of these was the taleggio stuffed inside. Taleggio is a mild Italian cheese made from cow’s milk; in this dish, it formed a gooey core that created a perfect bite of rice, cheese and tomato sauce. While five dishes were enough for three people, my group decided to order two more small plates. The first was a beet and avocado salad, a refreshing dish comprised

lauren heller/thresher


Owls win Silver Glove Series, fall against Southern Miss Jackson Dooling For the Thresher

After a win to clinch the Silver Glove Series against the University of Houston on Tuesday, Rice baseball went 1-2 over the weekend against Conference USA-leading University of Southern Mississippi. With the 2-2 week, the Owls continued their recent trend of .500 baseball, going 5-5 in their last 10 games to bring them to 13-25 overall and 4-11 in conference play. With the season series win over UH, Rice captured the Silver Glove trophy and hometown bragging rights for the first time since 2013 and the 16th time overall. They did so in exciting fashion. After a rain delay at the start of the game, Rice and UH played a tight game, with the Cougars taking a 3-2 lead entering the ninth. A single from sophomore shortstop Ford Proctor and a sacrifice bunt from senior first baseman Darryn Sheppard put a runner on second, and junior outfielder Chace Sarchet smacked a two-out, gametying RBI double to right field. The next batter, junior centerfielder Ryan Chandler, delivered a walk-off single to center.

With the season series win over UH, Rice captured the Silver Glove trophy for the first time since 2013. Three nights later, in the first game of a three-game set against No. 16 Southern Miss, a strong start from freshman Matt Canterino through four innings fell off the rails in the fifth when a bases-loaded catcher’s interference call eventually led to two unearned runs. The game remained close until the final two innings, when the Golden Eagles erupted for 10 unanswered runs to bring the final score to 15-4. Despite the loss, Dominic DiCaprio and Darryn Sheppard continued their strong offensive seasons, each going 2 for 4. In the second game of the series the next afternoon, the Owls bounced back in a big way, scoring 11 total runs on 16 hits from nine different players. Led by junior second baseman Tristan Gray, who recorded a four-hit afternoon including three doubles, Rice scored in double digits for just the third time this year and easily cruised to an 11-4 win against the top team in the conference. Rice got things going early on in the rubber match on Sunday afternoon, scoring a quick four runs in the first inning on RBI singles from senior outfielder Charlie Warren, Proctor and Sheppard. Southern Miss managed a couple runs of its own through the first two innings off of Rice’s former closer, junior pitcher Glenn Otto, but things took a turn for the worse in the top of the third inning when the Golden Eagles took the lead for good on a grand slam that made it 6-4. After giving up runs in four of the next five innings while only mustering another two of their own, the Owls fell 17-6. Looking forward, with just 18 games left on the season, Rice would need to go 16-2 the rest of the way to finish above .500. But with an upcoming series against Western Kentucky University — the only team in the conference with a worse record than theirs — the Owls have a chance to at least try to get back on track. They’ll need to if they have any hope of making the conference tournament, which only takes the top eight teams. Rice is currently in 11th, three games back of eighth place.



Rice women’s tennis rode a 15-5 record this season to the top seed in the Conference USA tournament. The Owls will be looking to win an unprecedented fifth consecutive conference championship. The Owls will take on the winner of the University of Texas, San Antonio and the University of Southern Mississippi in the second round of the C-USA tournament. The Owls are currently on a six-game win streak, with the last two wins coming against conference opponents Marshall University and Louisiana Tech University. The streak is their longest of the season. Rice’s singles record in dual matches was 73-24 and its doubles record in dual matches was 36-16. The Owls’ primary foe in the tournament will likely be Florida International University. FIU is 19-1 on the season and has won 17 straight matches. It is the second-longest win streak in school history. The Panthers recorded 13 shutouts on the year and had an overall singles record of 7813. Last season, Rice defeated FIU 4-1 in the final of the C-USA tournament. Juniors Lindsey Hodge and Wendy Zhang and senior Katherine Ip will likely play the top three singles spots in the tournament for Rice. The tournament will begin April 20, and Rice will play its first match on April 21. jiayi lyu/thresher

Men’s tennis earns No. 1 seed again Madison Buzzard Thresher Staff

One year removed from a 23-9 overall record, a Conference USA tournament championship and a first-round loss to Louisiana State University in the NCAA tournament, the Rice Owls men’s tennis team enters the Conference USA tournament at 20-7 with 10 wins in its last 12 matches. Rice currently boasts the third-best overall record in Conference USA, winning over 74 percent of their matches. Rice will be seeded first in the conference tournament for the third consecutive season. The Owls also captured several marquee wins this season, none more important than a victory over the No. 16-ranked University of South Carolina 4-2 in the 69th Blue Gray National Tennis Classic on Feb. 2. The battle was one of a series of matchups held in Montgomery, Alabama, where Rice’s players were housed by several local families who supported the Owls during the tournament. Several Rice seniors noted that the victory over South Carolina uplifted the team during the season. “Winning the Blue Gray tournament in Montgomery was my favorite moment of the year,” senior Tommy Bennett said. “It peaked with taking out South Carolina. We just wrecked them in doubles and it came down to [sophomore] Eric [Rutledge] to clinch it.” Senior David Warren agreed the tournament was the highlight of the season. According to Warren, playing on the road with fan support

is part of what has made his Rice tennis experience special. “The trip was one of the best experiences I have ever had, beating a top-16 team and being hosted by wonderful families who came and watched us play,” Warren said. According to Bennett, Rice must harness its experience playing outside the friendly confines of the George R. Brown Tennis Center, both neutral and away, to take advantage of postseason opportunities. “We have always felt confident about winning Conference USA after last year,” Bennett said. “The hardest thing was dealing with the number of away matches we scheduled this year. I think our success away from home will help us in the conference tournament and the NCAA tournament.” Several other factors will influence the Owls’ success in the Conference USA tournament and potentially the NCAA tournament. Because every match starts with three doubles matches (each played to one set), and the team who wins at least two out of three matches captures the doubles point, quick energy will help a team gain an early advantage. Towards the end of the season, several Rice players expressed disappointment with the team’s effort at the beginning of matches. Bennett said the Owls must focus and play with full intensity to advance in the postseason. “Tennis is tough,” Bennett said. “Some days we come out and we don’t have the energy or the spark. We need that to win the doubles point. It’s all about bringing the energy and using our

confidence to bring our doubles game back to where it was before.” Although the Rice men’s tennis team is confident it can win the C-USA tournament, several players acknowledged that luck is a major factor in the postseason. According to Warren, the Owls need to remain optimistic and confident while focusing on what they can control. “Our goal from the beginning of the year has been to win Conference USA,” Warren said. “Once you get into the NCAA tournament, anything can happen. Hopefully we can win a round or two and get to the Sweet 16.” Even if Rice fails to capture the C-USA crown, it can still capture an at-large bid into the NCAA tournament if the selection committee considers the Owls one of the top 34 teams in the nation who did not win their conference tournament. Currently ranked No. 38 in the nation, Rice would likely capture an at-large bid if necessary. Senior Henrik Munch said entering the C-USA tournament has made him nostalgic about his four years as an Owl. “We are all close, we are all friends,” Munch said. “It makes us want to compete and fight for each other. It is sad to leave, and it is hard to believe it has already been four years. But for now, we still have some matches left and I hope we will do well.” Rice will open its defense of the conference title against University of Texas, El Paso on Friday, April 21 at 2 p.m. at the Adams Tennis Center in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017


the Rice Thresher

YEAR IN REVIEW 2016-2017 Andrew Grottkau, Sports Editor




RECORD: 23-12

RECORD: 22-13

Men’s basketball thrived this season. After earning its first 20-win season since 2005 and its first-ever winning season in Conference USA play, the Owls qualified for the College Basketball Invitational. Despite a quarterfinal loss, the team had hope to improve even more moving forward. Unfortunately, a coaching change sparked a mass transfer of talent and the Owls look like they will face another rebuild moving forward.


In the highlight of the year in Rice Athletics, women’s basketball captured the Women’s Basketball Invitational title with a 74-62 win over the University of North Carolina, Greensboro. It was the Owls’ first-ever postseason title outside of conference play. Senior Maya Hawkins led the Owls to the title and won the MVP of the tournament following her final game.

cross country

cross country Rice cross country won the only conference championship so far this year for the school behind five top-15 finishes. Then, the Owls fell one spot shy of qualifying for the national championships with a thirdplace finish in the South Central Regional. Senior Katie Jensen and sophomore Abigail Cartwright qualified individually for the national championships and 161st and 247th, respectively.

The men’s cross country team earned its best finish in three years at the NCAA South Central Regional, finishing seventh out of 20 competing teams. Junior Marco Ruiz led the Owls with a 20thplace finish to earn all-region honors. The regional performance came after a fifth place finish in the C-USA championships weeks earlier.





Men’s tennis heads into the conference tournament with yet another 20-win season under its belt. The Owls, led by No. 1 singles player senior Tommy Bennett and the top-50 doubles team of Bennett and senior David Warren, will look for their second straight C-USA championship. Read more about their tournament outlook and more details on their season on pg. 10.

The women’s tennis team heads into the C-USA tournament as the favorite to win the title again. The Owls are looking to earn their fifth consecutive conference title. Senior Katherine Ip, who earned AllAmerican honors last season after notching two upsets to reach the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Championships, leads the Owls with a singles record of 10-3 in dual matches.




After an 0-6 start to the season, the Owls finished the year with a bit of momentum. Rice went 3-3 in its final six games and earned a decisive 44-24 win over the University of Texas, El Paso in its final home game. Despite questions about head coach David Bailiff’s job security, he will return for next season. The Owls will have to greatly improve on the defensive side of the ball after finishing 123rd out of 128 DI teams in yards allowed.

track & field

volleyball RECORD: 20-12 Rice volleyball hosted the C-USA tournament and came within just a few points of the championship despite entering as the No. 6 seed. The Owls took conferenceleading Western Kentucky University to five sets in the tournament championship, spurred by the home crowd, but ultimately fell in the final set. Senior Chelsey Harris and sophomore McKay Kyle both made the All-Tournament team for their performances in the championships.

track & field Young athletes have excelled for Rice women’s track and field. Freshmen Hannah Jackson and Camille Little have earned strong finishes in sprint events and relays. Jackson reached 10th in the nation in the 200-meter dash after her performance in the University of Houston Alumni Invitational. Little, who has also been an integral part of Rice’s 4x100-meter relay team, at one point ranked 27th in the country in the long jump with a distance of 5.99 meters. The Owls will look for their second straight C-USA title at the end of the season.

Men’s track and field has had a few outstanding individual performances this season. Junior Griffin Lee took home the top finish in the steeplechase at the Victor Lopez Invitational. Men’s track and field athlete Scott Filip used a stellar performance at the Texas Relays to catapult to third in the world in the decathlon. Filip, who finished 10th at the U.S. Olympic Trials in 2016, was also named a First-Team All-American at the 2015 NCAA championships in the decathlon. He will try to ride his momentum into the rest of the season.


RECORD: 11-5-1

Rice earned its first tournament championship since 2014 with a win in the Jim West Collegiate Invitational to close out the season. The Owls finished just one stroke better than Southeastern Louisiana University to take home the title. Junior Mario Carmona finished second in the individual competition with a score of five under par.

baseball CURRENT RECORD: 13-25 Though it has been a down year for Rice baseball, the team is trying to rally in the latter part of the conference season to qualify for the Conference USA tournament. Currently, the Owls are three games behind a three-way tie for the final spot in the postseason. Sophomore catcher Dominic DiCaprio is a big reason why, as he has slugged his way to a .356 batting average this season.


Soccer started the regular season just 4-4-1 but finished on a seven-game winning streak to earn the No. 2 seed on the C-USA tournament. Unfortunately, the Owls fell in the first round to the University of Texas, El Paso. Junior Nia Stallings led the team with five goals, and Stallings and senior Jenny Fichera tied for the team lead with seven assists each. With only five graduating seniors, Rice will return the majority of its talent for next season.


Swimming earned a second-place finish in the C-USA championships this season thanks in large part to the strong performance of sophomore MarieClaire Schillinger. Schillinger broke the C-USA and Rice records in the 100-yard breaststroke on her way to an individual event title. Schillinger also won the 200-yard breaststroke the next day and set a school record in that event. She qualified for the NCAA swimming championships and finished 41st in the 100yard breaststroke and 50th in the 200-yard breaststroke.

infographic by katrina cherk | photos by sean chu, vidya giri, jiayi lyu/thresher & courtesy rice athletics



Wednesday, April 19, 2017

the Rice Thresher



The Kendrick Lamar Award for Always Raising the Bar

Rice Tuition

The “Dude, Hold My Beer” Award for Innovation

The Sean Combs Award for Questionable Nomenclature

The Chicago Cubs Award for “It’s About Damn Time”

Berlin Wall Vandals (Artists?)

The “Magister” Decision

All those Owls who lost their virginities this year

The Mike Pence Award for Dubious Back-Up Plans

The “Shit, You’re a Prospie?” Award for Biggest Buzz-Kill

The Mayonnaise Award for “I Don’t Want to Admit to Myself That I Like This”

Baker Christmas’ Decision to go Public

Mickey’s departure from Pub


The Jeb Bush Participation Award

The Justin Timberlake Award for Most Improved

The Marty McFly Award for Screwing with Time

Will Rice at Beer Bike

The Perpetrators of Clockgate

The Scarecrow Award for Outstanding Achievement in a Field

The Salvador Dalí award for “What am I looking at here?”

Rice Men’s Basketball 2016-2017 The Adam Sandler Award for Least Improved

Moody Pop-up

November 8, 2016

Fondren Library (where my bike desks at?)

The CCD Email Presence Award for Best Marketing Campaign

The Eye of Sauron award for Unrelenting Vigilance

The United Airlines Award for Actively Getting Worse

TWO-WAY TIE BETWEEN Rice Business and Rice Business WisdoM

Lisa Zollner

Senior GPAs

This week, after months of eyeing the throne, Isaac “The Usurper” Schultz is taking his seat as co-editor, and Riley is making the descent back to lowly serfdom.

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RICE ALUM HIRING tutors for Middle & High School Math, Natural & Social Science, Foreign Language, Humanities, and SAT/ACT prep. Reliable transportation required. Pay is based upon a variety of factors. Contact 832-428-8330 and email resume to

STAR PIZZA HIRING for Waiter/Waitress and Host/Hostess. Apply in person or via resume @2111 Norfolk. JOIN OUR TEAM!

SPLEEG, SUMMER CHILD, AND THE FESTIVE DUNCAN SENIORS. The time went by so fast. We are so proud of you all. Go forth and make good choices! Love A, E, M & Z

The Thresher reserves the right to refuse any advertising for any reason. Additionally, the Thresher does not take responsibility for the factual content of any ad. Printing an advertisement does not constitute an endorsement by the Thresher.

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The Rice Thresher | Wednesday, April 19, 2017  
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